3, 4, 5

This lesson will help students understand the importance of sharing their talents with others. While written for a Catholic Elementary School, this lesson may be easily adapted for public school use .

Lesson Rating 
PrintThree Thirty-Minute Class Periods

The learner will:

  • reflect on personal skills, interests, and talents.
  • read about how people share their talents with others.
  • demonstrate one talent to the class.
  • Sharing Our Gifts (Attachment One)
  • Demonstrating Talents (Attachment Two)
  • Video camera
  • Camera
  • Paper
  • Student props
Home Connection 

Optional: students take turns bringing home the videotape of the demonstrations.


  1. Anticipatory Set: Write these two sentences on the board:“What you are is God’s gift to you. What you become is your gift to God.”Or for a public school: “You have many gifts. What gifts will you give to the world?”Have students explain what the statements mean to them.

  2. Explain that philanthropy is the giving and sharing of time, talent, or treasure intended for the common good. Sometimes people think they have no special talents, but that is only because they don’t see the things they do as talents. Ask students to silently think about what they can do that is a talent. 

  3. Distribute Sharing Our Gifts (Attachment One) which gives examples of people sharing to help others. Discuss the examples and classify them according to whether they are giving of time, talent, or treasure (or a combination). Discuss why a person might give or volunteer.

  4. Ask the following questions to initiate a class discussion about personal strengths and interests that could be shared for the common good:

    • What do you want to be when you grow up?
    • What are you interested in?
    • What do you like to do?
    • How could you use your time or talent to help someone else?
    • Why is it important or desirable to share your talents with others?
  5. Have students make a plan to demonstrate to the rest of the class a particular skill or talent they have. Distribute the worksheet, Demonstrating Talents (Attachment Two), for students to use as a guide. (This activity may be sent home to be completed with parents or guardians.)

  6. Have students demonstrate their talents or skills to the class. They should use a visual aid, talk loud enough to be heard, and present the skill in a logical way. These presentations may be videotaped to show to another class or to take home for family viewing. Photograph each student for the extension activity. (Parental permission may be required before taking visual images of students.)

  7. After the presentations, brainstorm ways that students can use their skills and talents to help someone in the school or community. Challenge students to find a way to share their talents.


Assess the student demonstrations for organization, use of a visual aid, ability to be heard, and their ability to choose and explain their talent or skill.

Cross Curriculum 

Each student will evaluate his or her talents and choose one to share with the class. As a further extension, students may demonstrate their skill for someone outside the classroom through an actual service project or simply by sharing the class video.

Philanthropy Framework

  1. Strand PHIL.I Definitions of Philanthropy
    1. Standard DP 01. Define Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark E.1 Define philanthropy as the giving and sharing of time, talent, or treasure intended for the common good.
  2. Strand PHIL.III Philanthropy and the Individual
    1. Standard PI 01. Reasons for Individual Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark E.1 Describe one reason why a person might give or volunteer.